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Quick meals and snacks for after school

We all want our kids to eat well, but in that busy time between school and bed, it can be hard to come up with quick and nutritious snack and meal ideas. Beat the clock with this terrific list of quick meal and snack ideas.

Tips for planning after school meals and snacks

  • Brainstorm meal and snack ideas with your kids. Keep an ongoing list on the fridge.
  • To save time, get into the habit of making extra food. For example, leftover beans from dinner can be used to make bean quesadillas the next day.   
  • Check your schedule. It’s helpful to know if you will be eating at home or if you need to pack food to-go.
  • Aim to have meals with food from at least three of the four Food Groups.
  • Aim to have snacks with food from at least two Food Groups.

5 quick snacks your kids can make at home (with your supervision)

  1. Almond Butter Spiced Apple
  2. Carrot and Apple Salad
  3. Bagel Boomerang
  4. Ground up Frog Smoothie
  5. Lightened-Up Guacamole and Chips

5 quick snacks you can take on-the-go

  1. Fruit-yogurt smoothie in a thermal mug
  2. Cheese cubes, whole-grain crackers, an orange and water
  3. Hummus, sugar snap peas or pieces of broccoli and water
  4. Edamame (green soy beans), a hard-cooked egg and water 
  5. A mix of dry whole grain cereal with plain popcorn and nuts and water

5 quick dinner ideas

1. “No cook” dinners

  • Salmon salad spread over whole grain crackers. Serve with grated carrot-raisin-mayonnaise salad, raw pepper strips and a fruit smoothie.
  • Spread refried beans, salsa and grated cheese over a whole grain tortilla. Roll and cut into bite-size pieces. Serve with raw vegetables, apple slices and milk or a fortified soy beverage.

2. Hearty soup night  

  • Use up leftovers to make a tasty soup. Include some protein (lean meat, fish or beans), whole grain pasta, rice or noodles and plenty of vegetables (fresh, plain frozen or low-sodium canned) along with no added salt broth.  Also try: Souper Lunch with Rice and Beans or Tofu Vegetable Soup.

3. Slow cooker night

4. Breakfast for dinner night

  • Scrambled eggs served with whole grain toast, grape tomatoes and pieces of raw broccoli with creamy salad dressing as a dip, orange slices and milk or fortified soy beverage.
  • Mini crustless quiches made with frozen vegetables and baked in a muffin tin. Serve with fresh seasonal fruit and a crusty whole grain dinner roll, milk or fortified soy beverage.

5. Stir fry night

  • Save time with a stir fry! Use frozen, plain vegetables and leftover meats. Frozen shrimp and tofu also cook up quick.  

5 Quick dinners your kids can make (with your supervision)

  • Try canned baked beans or sardines on whole grain toast. Serve with steamed or raw green beans, apple slices spread thinly with peanut butter and milk or fortified soy beverage.
  • Try French toast topped with unsweetened canned peach slices, dried cranberries and toasted pecans. Serve with a fruit smoothie.
  • Spread salmon or egg salad on a whole grain hot dog bun. Serve with raw carrots, fruity coleslaw made with sliced grapes or canned pineapple tidbits and a glass of water.
  • Make cheesy egg burritos. Serve with lower sodium canned vegetable soup or homemade soup and a glass of water.
  • Heat up leftover dahl (lentil stew). Serve with whole wheat pita wedges, steamed cauliflower and a glass of kefir.

Kid Friendly Snack Recipes

Layered Yogurt Pops
Leek, Mushroom and Cheese Frittata
Mango Chicken Wraps
Tandoori Haddock
Baked Cabbage-Roll Skillet Supper

You may also be interested in

Family-Friendly One-Week Sample Menu Plan
Video: Quick and easy snack ideas
Loving your leftovers

Last Update – October 20, 2016

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